It’s one of the hardest habits to break and can require a great deal of persuasion – parents often struggle with weaning their child off a pacifier. Yes, pacifiers provide a sense of security and a method of self-relaxation for infants, but the downside of pacifiers is the effect they can have on the growth and development of the teeth and mouth. At the dental practice of Dr. Dipika Shah, DDS we welcome all kinds of patients, including pediatric patients who have yet to wean off of the pacifier.
Prolonged pacifier use can cause changes in the shape of the roof of the mouth, prevent proper growth of the mouth and create problems with tooth alignment. Long-term pacifier use can lead to a variety of complications including tilting in of the bottom teeth and slanting in of the top and front teeth. Narrowing of the roof of the mouth and misalignment of the jaws can also occur. The Academy of General Dentistry recommends that children stop using pacifiers by the age of two. Up until that age, any alignment problem with the teeth or developing bone is usually corrected within six months after pacifier use has stopped.
If you have questions about pacifiers and teeth development, give us a call. To learn more about the services we provide at the practice, visit www.dentistnj.com for more information. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Dipika Shah, DDS, here in our Holmdel, NJ office, call 732-264-8180.